PING!!! A message comes in and since I am bored I unlock my phone in anticipation of reading a message that would lift my spirits, so I open it and discover its one of these broadcast messages marketing valentine hampers. I hiss so loud my mother asks why.
So its that time of the year again, one would think that with the subsidy removal and the hike in goods that people might lay low. Don’t get me wrong I am not a spoil sport but valentine is that one holiday that makes me to crawl under my bed and remain there because of the fuss. I understand that it is a day of love, we keep hearing the story behind the real valentine each year at church. It is a day of expressing love to a loved one.
Now, who is a loved one? It could be parents, brother, sister or even the less privileged but our mentality always refer it as boyfriend/girlfriend matter.
As a young lady I know how girls save up and buy gifts for their partners, going out of their way to make it as romantic as possible while the men try to pretend its not valentine just to avoid the gifts and the mushiness that comes with it. Sometimes the dude might not even appreciate the effort. Some of them do not know how difficult it is to burn a CD of his favorite love songs, look all sexy and buy a box of chocolate and all the stuff that comes with it. Not attacking the dudes, just making a point.
Personally I have never had a romantic valentine not because I haven’t had boyfriends during the holiday but there is always an excuse to be away that day or it just turns out to be a normal day and we celebrate ours a day before or a day after but Its never the same as that day. No regrets there because I have had some of the most memorable valentines.
One I remember too well was valentine 2009 where some friends raised money two weeks before valentine celebration that day and went shopping. They bought a bag of rice, cartoon of tin tomatoes,carton of books and more. We spent the night before valentine sharing & packaging these items in small bags to share, not because fourteen girls didn’t have boyfriends but because there was so much suffering around us and if we could make their day by sharing food to them so be it. We wore the valentine color of red and chartered a bus for the day. We went round the city of Jos sharing food to women and kids, some of these women work and their husbands decide they are the boss and collect the money to go squander it on irrelevant materials leaving their wives and kids hungry and hurting. The men were not also left out that day. These kids in the orphanages have been abandoned or their parents killed in the Jos crisis. They see you and just keep jumping for joy and are so excited. While you sit with them, they just keep talking about lessons in school and ask you questions, some drag you to their play area just to show you their favorite toy. Others might study you before warming up to you and they are not to blame, people come and go in their life. They might even sing for you, reducing you to tears. There and then you reflect and discover how lucky you are.
Now, don’t get me wrong; am not saying you shouldn’t plan that dinner or surprise for your partner, you can always fix it in the evening and still have the time of your life.
Spend some time with these people that need that love most, sometimes it is not just about your money but that quality time you spend with them could change one person’s view of life from a depressed state of mind to a hopeful one. No matter what, they will always appreciate your presence.
Try something new this valentine and trust me you will always look back and smile when you remember 2012 valentine. Don’t forget it is a day of love, show some love and receive a thousand back.
Do have a wonderful and beautiful valentine.